In these uncertain times, we are especially grateful for the bounty from nature. The Incredible Edible Milbridge (IEM) gardens are thriving like never before! Please read on for a monthly update on everything Incredible Edible.
- Gardening fever has hit Downeast! This spring, WHRL/IEM partnered with Elin Mckinnon from the Community Caring Collaborative, Transforming Rural Experience in Education (TREE), and Maine Seacoast Mission to offer “Downeast Family Victory Gardens”. This project provides local families an opportunity to grow their own vegetables at home, with the added support of local gardeners and educational gardening videos. Topics like “What Does Your Garden Need to Thrive”, “How to Water Properly”, and “How to Troubleshoot Common Problems” are addressed through 5 – 10 minute videos.
- Incredible Edible’s large pick-your-own vegetable gardens are bursting with fresh organic vegetables for the whole community. WHRL has posted COVID-19 Guidelines so the public can safely come by and harvest veggies at the IEM Gardens at the Red Barn Motel and Milbridge Commons. We ask people to keep at least 6 feet from other garden visitors, wash your hands before and after visiting the garden, and wash your produce when you get home.
- Already strawberries, spinach, kale, lettuce, radishes, and broccoli have been picked from the gardens. Many of these veggies will continue to be available into July. Ripening in the next few weeks will be herbs, turnips, beets, chard, snap peas, and more! We urge people to come by and browse through the gardens, enjoy the beauty and pick some vegetables for dinner.
- Thanks to generous grants from Wyman’s and the Maine Community Foundation, WHRL plans to construct a 15 ft x 25 ft greenhouse from Sunglo Greenhouses behind our new home at 87 Main St. The greenhouse will allow us to offer more educational opportunities as well as a place to start seeds and extend our growing season. Our hope is that the greenhouse will go up this fall.
- At the Milbridge Commons, thanks to a grant from the Maine Community Foundation and the hard work of Janis Lesbines and her team, we have a large pollinator garden sitting next to the vegetable garden. The beautiful flowers are attracting bees and butterflies that will help our vegetables grow and are a delight to the eye.
- Finally, by popular demand, and with a kick-off donation by community member Tami Anne Antieri, we have installed a port-o-potty at the Milbridge Commons, tucked behind a blind of straw bales. If this is something you utilize, please help us keep this service available throughout the summer season.
While COVID-19 has forced us to cancel Milbridge Days activities, our school programming, community workshops and other events, there is a lot happening at the IEM Gardens at the Red Barn Motel, the Milbridge Commons, and at the pocket gardens around town! Stop by and see! And if you are interested in volunteering for Incredible Edible, please reach out to Pammy at firstname.lastname@example.org. Volunteer hours at the garden next to Red Barn Motel are on Thursday afternoons from 2 – 5.